Make a pinhole camera

Make a pinhole camera for safe solar observing.
By | Published: June 27, 2016

OK, you want to view the Sun, but you don’t have an approved solar filter for your telescope. Maybe you don’t even have a telescope. No problem. I’ll bet you have a cardboard box. That and a few common supplies will let you build a pinhole viewer that you can observe the Sun with. And while I admit that the image you’ll see won’t rival that through a properly filtered telescope, it will be the Sun, and you can watch it as long as you want without any safety concerns.

Just follow the steps in the captions. Feel free to experiment with the size of the box, whether or not you leave the extra cardboard pieces attached, or the pin’s diameter. In fact, if you’re a clever soul, you may want to mount the box on a thin plywood base, which you then can attach to a sturdy camera tripod. That way, you won’t have to hold the box while viewing the Sun.

This activity is great for school classes. (I suggest the teacher cuts out the hole.)